What Can Facilities Do When Faced With COVID-19 Variants?
Viruses constantly change through mutation, and new variants of a virus are expected to occur. This is also true for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. As of the publish date of this article, CDC and WHO have confirmed four COVID-19 variants: Alpha, Beta, Gamma, and Delta. Currently, the Delta variant is the most predominant variant in the U.S., and more contagious than the other virus strains. Although CDC claims instances are rare, fully vaccinated people can experience infection. In July, it updated its guidance to recommend “both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals wear masks in public indoor settings in areas of high transmission to help prevent Delta’s spread and to protect others.”
What does this mean for building managers and business owners? What can you do to ensure your tenants/employees/customers are safe? What needs to be done to prevent the spread of current and future variants of COVID-19? Most importantly, what needs to be done if someone in your building is infected?
How Will COVID Variants Impact My Business?
Since the beginning of the pandemic, businesses have been fighting an uphill battle. With quarantining impacting revenue and potential growth for certain businesses, a bleak image of the future was painted for some. A glimmer of hope shone through when cases slowly began to stagnate in conjunction with more people becoming vaccinated. As a result, mask mandates became more lax. However, with the rise and threat of the Delta variant, the world is beginning to mask up once again.
All hope is not lost, however. We know proper handwashing, frequent cleaning, proper disinfection, and social distancing can be used as a weapon to fight against a pandemic. As a business owner or facility manager, you should be placing the safety and overall health of everyone at the top of your priority list.
What Can I Do to Keep My Customers and Staff Safe?
While the current variations of COVID are much more severe, they are still susceptible to traditional disinfection. However, extra precautions will need to be taken when disinfecting, since COVID variants have the potential to be more infectious. Sources indicate the delta variant may be twice as transmissible as the original strains. It is best to use a form of disinfection that can thoroughly disinfect all surfaces, such as electrostatic disinfection. Frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs, desks, counters, and tables will need dedicated high-touch surface disinfection. City Wide manages all the disinfection services you need to significantly decrease the chance of an outbreak occurring in your building!
What Happens if Somone in My Building is Infected?
If someone in your office is infected, believes they are infected or has recently come into contact with someone who is infected with any strain of COVID-19, you should immediately separate them from the office and advise they quarantine themselves for two weeks. Once quarantined, disinfection of the areas where the infected person visited should occur. If this individual has a desk or office, it is advised you thoroughly disinfect, and then clean. If you are unsure of how you should approach disinfecting, we recommend you contact a disinfection agency with a proven track record in handling high-level disinfection. Fortunately, companies like City Wide Facility Solutions can manage such agencies and ensure you are getting the quality of work you need while staying within your budget.